|Image source: ribollita.net|
Those spending holidays in villas in Tuscany are spoiled for
choice when it comes to culinary delights, with the region’s best restaurants,
cafés and markets all an easy drive away. Favourite Italian dishes like pizza
will be available wherever you go, and you can expect excellent quality; one of
the joys of travelling in Tuscany, however, is the chance to sample its
regional specialties. For anyone wishing to try Tuscan cuisine in the place
that does it best – read on!
The principles of Tuscan cuisine hark back to the region’s agrarian
past, when a meal needed to strike a perfect balance between simplicity, good
nutrition and wonderful flavours. So when venturing out from their villas in Tuscany to seek out a
great dinner, travellers should look out for places serving local dishes and
using local products – which of course make the best ingredients for
traditional Tuscan recipes. Vegetables and fruit from the surrounding hills,
mushrooms from the mountain forests, fresh-baked bread, and local pork or game
are the mainstays of Tuscan cooking. Look out for the regional favourite, ribollita
(a hearty vegetable soup with bread), and pappardelle with boar or rabbit.
When it comes to dessert, every city seems to have its own treats in
version of tiramisu popular in Florence, zucotto, is a ‘must-try’, while in
Siena look out for panforte – a rich cake made with fruit, nuts, honey and
spices. Other favourites are almond biscuits – ricciarelli – and spiced
biscuits – cavallucci – as well as the cakes associated with different seasons
and festivals, such as schiacciata fiorentina, a cake shaped like Florence’s
lily symbol, which is eaten at winter Carnival.
It’s not just meals out that can be enjoyed with a local touch – while
staying in villas
in Tuscany, add regional flair to your market-bought lunches
with Tuscan olives, local bread, pecorino, as well as the cured meats enjoyed
by Tuscans, such as finocchiona, which is made with fennel seeds. Buonissimo!
Labels: Tuscany Villas